A History of Katoke Trust

The Katoke Trust is a grassroots non-government organisation, administered and run entirely by volunteers. It was started in the Sutherland Shire of Sydney, where most of our original members lived. The Katoke Lweru Secondary School is meeting the great need for secondary education in Tanzania, where only three out of five Tanzanian adolescents are enrolled in lower-secondary education, and fewer complete secondary education.

804 acres of land is purchased by the ChurchMissionary Society and given to the local Anglican diocese

A Teachers’ College and primary school are established in the area

Founder of the Katoke Trust, Alan Watson, spends 4 years as CMS Missionary

Government takes over all schools and educational institutions, including the Katoke Teachers College

Alan Watson returns to Katoke. He saw that poverty was rife and education standards had fallen. Fewer than 50% of children ever started Primary school and only 4% went on to Secondary school.

Alan Watson and Reverend Samuel Habimana co-found The Katoke Trustfor Overseas Aid

The Trust partners with the Anglican Church, which owns the site where the Katoke secondary school will be located

With funding from UNSW and the Archbishop of Sydney’s Overseas Relief and Aid Fund (ORAF), Alan Watson and Neville Hatton start the Katoke Primary School Improvement Program, working with the nearest 21 local primary schools. The Trust sponsors a pilot study into malaria prevention, in a nearby village of 2,000 people

The Trust receives funding from the ORAF and AusAid to undertake a malaria prevention program covering some 10,000 villagers

The Trust starts fundraising to build a local Secondary school

Don Corban and wife Lorraine arrive at Katoke to commence construction of school buildings including student and staff accommodation

After three years of planning and one year of building (including 4 classrooms), the Katoke Secondary School is opened in April. Sid Moir is appointed as Headmaster, supported by Marilyn. 160 Form 1 students are enrolled at the school.

Student numbers increase to 270. School buildings – a girls’ dormitory and a further 3 classrooms are built. Sid and Marilyn’s daughter, Anna Moir, arrives in Katoke to support her parents and the School especially with the sponsorship program.

The first Form 4 students graduate, performing in the top 13% of the nation. The first of 20 teachers for tertiary students, sponsored as part of the Trust’s School Improvement Program, graduates with a B.Ed, and is qualified to teach Swahili and Geography at the Katoke Lweru School. Vocational Assistance Scheme commences with more than 30 Form 4 students supported in advanced study and trade courses.
Alan Watson receives an Order of Australia for service to the international community and to education

Stage 1 and 2 of the Katoke Lweru Secondary School are completed, including 12 classrooms, science and computer laboratories, student and staff accommodation. Form 4 students are placed 3rd out of 45 schools in the district 

The first Form 5 students are enrolled at the school

The school expands to include more than 40 Form 6 students. Rowena Bragg is appointed as Headmaster supported by husband Peter

The school has more than 460 students. Another boys dormitory is completed. The first Form 6 students graduate, and 5 students begin University studies. A mentoring and pastoral care initiative is launched, including a ‘gap year’ mentoring program run by former sponsored graduates. Building of improved kitchen and staff flats are continued, water systems are automated and maintenance is done on existing dormitories

Katoke remains in the top 10% in national exam results mandated for Forms 2 and 4. Katoke members Stephen Diakatos (Dentist), Colin Glendinning (Doctor) and David Lefcovitch (Photographer) visit the school to undertake dental health checks, and liaise on health initiatives. The school receives funding for new laptop computers. In September, Ken Langford-Smith takes over as Headmaster.